Every year an estimated 11.2 billion tonnes of solid waste are collected worldwide.
But in Brixton, south London, items such wooden planks, broken tiles, scaffolding poles, pianos and even gym flooring – all once destined for landfill – are being re-used as part of a new volunteer-run social enterprise.
The Remakery is the first centre in the UK set up to repair and re-use a wide range of valuable materials that would otherwise be wasted. And the team’s first job has been to remake their own space – once a derelict car park, bricked up because of vandalism and other crime.
Around 100 entrepreneurs, from furniture refurbishers to textile upcylers, have already shown an interest in renting the Remakery’s workshop spaces, and the centre aims to be self-funding by 2015.
Brixton suffers from high levels of unemployment and deprivation, and the project also aims to help repair people’s lives by offering volunteering opportunities.
Reporter Sylvia Rowley travels to south London to meet the team hoping to kick-start a new re-use economy.
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